Shakespeare's Sonnets By William Shakespeare Summary and Analysis Sonnet 34

Summary

The poet speaks of a quite different feeling than he did in Sonnet 33. He is puzzled and painfully disappointed by the youth, whose callousness dashes any hope of his enjoying a dependable friendship. The opening complaint, again based on the metaphor of the young man as the sun, shows how much the poet's perceptions have changed. He has been wounded by the youth, and apologies notwithstanding, the scar remains: "For no man well of such a salve can speak / That heals the wound, and cures not the disgrace."

The poet might lament the inner hurt that he feels because of the youth's actions, but the sonnet ends with him unable to remain angry. Just as in Sonnet 33's line 13, "Yet him for this my love no whit disdaineth," the poet remains steadfast in his devotion to the youth. Although disgraced because of the youth's actions, the poet in the concluding couplet forgives his friend: "Ah, but those tears are pearl which thy love sheeds, / And they are rich and ransom all ill deeds." The young man apparently cries because of his offense against the poet and effectively manipulates the poet's sentiments so that the poet forgives him for jeopardizing their relationship.

Glossary

physic remedy.

sheeds sheds.

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